Spice Rubs for Grilling

Makes 1 ¼ cups, enough for 5 to 10 pounds of meat, poultry or seafood

Any of these rubs can be used either for grilling or roasting. When grilling, oil the grill well and avoid moving the meat for a minute or two to allow the rub to form a crust. Plan to coat meats lightly with oil, then apply the rub, about 2 tablespoons per pound of meat. You can apply the rubs up to 24 hours before cooking, but as little as 15 to 30 minutes ahead of time will allow the flavors to penetrate. See our Spice-rubbed Chicken recipe.

All-purpose spice rub

1/3 cup coarse (kosher) salt

¼ cup packed light brown sugar

¼ cup paprika (to taste if using spicy paprika)

2 tbsp coarsely ground black pepper

2 tbsp dried oregano

2 tbsp dried thyme leaves

1 tbsp cayenne pepper (optional and to taste)

Southwestern rub

Replace some of the paprika with cumin, coriander and chili powder

Indian Rub

Replace oregano and thyme with turmeric, curry powder, ground ginger and cardamom

Mediterranean rub

Replace some or all of the oregano and thyme with dried tarragon, marjoram, rosemary, dill or basil. Omit the cayenne pepper.

  1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl, using your hands to break up the sugar.
  2. Store in an airtight container away from heat and light for up to six months.

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